Mobile-first is now the norm. Retrofitting desktop ads into mobile formats? That's quickly becoming a thing of the past.
Marketers understand the importance of creating advertising that's designed for mobile users from the start. The shift from tried and true desktop formats, like banner ads, is just one aspect of mobile marketing motivating brands and agencies to re-think their mobile strategies this year.
Here are three more ways marketers should approach mobile to thrive in a mobile-first world:
Master Mobile Video
The need to engage consumers and connect with customers on an emotional level isn't new, but it might explain why mobile video is currently in such high demand. Viewing videos on a mobile device is widely believed to deliver a more intimate experience than desktop or TV. IT has the potential to improve the brand-customer relationship, while reaching consumers wherever they are.
There are several mobile video formats that marketers will experiment with this year The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) found that vertical video and 360 degree video are among those that are top of mind.
Each has its advantages. Because vertical video formats respond to a shift in consumer behavior and correspond with the growing vertical viewing habit, they're well equipped to incite a consumer response. Snapchat has also changed the way teens and young millennials consume video.
Snapchat advocates for the format, claiming ads and shows shot vertically perform best for the messaging app. The company says vertical video ads on Snapchat are viewed through to the end nine times more frequently than their horizontal counterparts.
As for 360-degree video, a recent survey by Nikon revealed 90% of American consumers believe that watching content in a 360-degree format can deliver a better experience. With Facebook and Twitter both now offering immersive video capabilities and brands like Nat Geo, GoPro and BuzzFeed, investing in 360 degree video content, this technology has earned a place in 2017 mobile campaigns.
Improve User Experience
According to Forrest Consulting, 66% of brand advertisers believe "at least half" of their mobile advertising isn't meeting objectives, while 73% of consumers say mobile ads they typically see "fail to create a positive user experience."
In order to be effective, mobile advertising produced in the coming year must deliver an experience that entices consumers and incites a response, rather than causing them to click away.
One solution to this challenge is to marry ad messaging with content to produce marketing that's native to the mobile environment. The Mobile Marketing Association reports mobile native advertising can perform as much as 10 times better than mobile display advertising. To achieve this, it must be meaningful to the viewer.
When the messaging is relevant, formats like in-feed video and rich media native ads serve a dual purpose: They deliver desirable content, while respecting the user by integrating themselves into the online environment. It’s about enhancing the mobile experience, rather than getting in consumers' way. This can lead to improved brand loyalty and even increased conversions.
Invest where the audiences are: In-App
Count on in app advertising to become a critical part of 2017 mobile marketing plans. eMarketer reported in September that U.S. adults spent more than 85% of their daily mobile time with apps last year, compared with just over 14% on the mobile web. That translates into nearly two hours a day in-app, versus 19 minutes on a mobile site.
Mobile apps can connect marketers with mobile users of all kinds. Advertisers shouldn’t hesitate to invest at least a portion of their budgets to in-app advertising, and particularly in-app programmatic advertising. Experimenting with programmatic in-app can help marketers ensure their campaigns reach the right audience in the most efficient way.
Support for t mobile-first formats boosts the value of inventory to buyers and helps to ensure a great user experience, while at the same time providing more ad options to advertisers.
Notifications, full-screen app ads, banners, and third-party sponsorships are all viable options, and many in-app ads can be paired with GPS-derived location data, demographic, and contextual insight for precision targeting, creating even more value for brands and advertisers.
As we make our way through the year, keep this three-pronged game plan in mind. Mobile-first is about designing for devices, but it's also about your customers. Meeting their evolving needs will ensure that consumers, advertisers, and publishers alike will have a great year.